Riyadh - SPA:
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired the Cabinet session held at Al-Yamamah Palace here yesterday.
At the outset of the session, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the talks he held with President Mahmoud Abbas, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization and Chairman of the Palestinian National Authority, on the developments of the Palestinian cause as well as the exerted efforts to put the peace process back on track. The talks also dealt with the need for the international community to shoulder its responsibilities on this issue in order to achieve a just and comprehensive peace which guarantees for the Palestinian people the establishment of their independent state on their national soil with Al-Quds as its capital in accordance with the international legitimacy resolutions and the Arab peace initiative. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques renewed Saudi Arabia's stance with and support for all efforts that aim at achieving such objective. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques also briefed the Cabinet on the telephone call he received from President Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad of Iran.
In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following the session, Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Abdulaziz bin Mohieddin Khoja said the Cabinet listened to a number of reports on the preparations of various sectors concerned with serving the pilgrims who began arriving in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj.
Dr. Khoja said the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques urged all to exert efforts to serve domestic as well as foreign pilgrims in performing Hajj rituals since their arrival through the Kingdom's ports until their departure.
Dr. Khoja also said that the Cabinet highly appreciated the contents of the speech of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques delivered at the International Conference on the effects of Masses and Crowded Gatherings on Public Health, which is considered the first conference of its kind in the world. The Cabinet praised the invitation of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to establish a modern discipline in Medicine concerned with this phenomenon.
The Cabinet also expressed appreciation for the conference participants' commendation of the experience of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the field of awareness-raising and in dealing with human crowds of different nationalities and cultures within limited geographic and time scopes during Hajj and Umrah seasons.
Dr. Khoja said the Cabinet then reviewed a number of issues on its agenda and issued the following decisions:
The Cabinet approved the application of the charter regulating the affairs of the personnel of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities to the staff of the sector of antiquities and museums within the Commission until the issuance of the unified charter regulating the affairs of the personnel of Public organizations, authorities, and Funds.
The Cabinet approved the system of state revenues. A royal decree to this effect is being issued.
The Cabinet approved amending paragraphs: 1, 3 and 4 of the provision (Thirdly) of the Cabinet decision no: (21) dated on 29/01/1430, and the paragraphs shall read as follows:
'1- Ending of the engagement between Kharj Agricultural scheme and Irrigation and Drainage Organization in Ahsa and annexing it to the animal resources sector of the Ministry of Agriculture, terminating the processing of milk and its marketing, but keeping the Bank of Genetics and Artificial Fertilization Centre and its main and auxiliary services, both the administrative and housing, and all employees in the scheme, attached to Ministry of Agriculture, which will provide the Technical College in Kharj, affiliated to the General Corporation for Technical and Vocational Training, with cow milk to take advantage of it in training according to a mechanism to be set, on agreement, between the Ministry and the Corporation.
3- Allocating to the Technical College in Kharj, which is an affiliate with the General Corporation for Technical and Vocational Training, a land plot of 315,973 sqm of the land of the Agricultural Scheme of Kharj and another land plot from the Scheme of 267,800 sqm, on which already stand the barns, the milking unit, and the processing unit, in addition to the mud-made buildings on a plot of 52,170 sqm.
4- The General Corporation for Technical and Vocational Training will supervise and maintain the mud-made buildings with a size of 52,170 sqm that comprise the barns, the milking unit and the old processing unit.
Having reviewed a report submitted by the Minister of Finance, the Cabinet approved the following:
1- Owning a land prior to applying for a loan from the Real Estate Development Fund is no longer a condition.
2- Setting the loan in all regions of the Kingdom at SRs 300,000.
3- The Real Estate Development Fund will:
a- Set up a mechanism for cooperation between the Fund and other financial and commercial institutions to grant additional finances to those who already owe the Fund.
b- Updating the Fund's system to be compatible with the system of the General Housing Authority, related regulations, new developments and submitting them.
The Cabinet authorized the President of King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy - or his deputy - to discuss with the Russian side a draft agreement between the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Government of Russian Federation on cooperation in the peaceful application of nuclear energy, sign it in light of a formula attached to the decision, and forward the final signed version for the completion of the regulatory process.